As promised, after a Lenten post on seafood, a Brighter Products take on the wonderful world of meat.
Unfortunately, as I was surfing the Internet between cans of Chicken of the Sea sardines in mustard sauce and sips of the (IMO, incredibly tasty) Authentic Asia™ Shrimp Tom Yum Soup, I kept running across a raft of articles epitomized by:
“Cutting red meat intake could lengthen lifespan, Harvard study finds”.
Per the news release on the study, “…red meat eaters had a higher risk of dying compared with those whose diets relied upon other sources of protein such as fish, chicken, nuts, or low-fat dairy products.” To which one can only add: thank God for Foster Farms.
Well, the latest bad news on red meat makes me feel better about my Lent-and-Fridays regimen, particularly in light of news articles that takes the wind out of even that sail:
“Fish Oil for Heart Attack Prevention: Is It a Myth?
A new study finds that omega-3 fatty acids don’t help patients with heart disease avoid future heart-related problems.”
The good news is that a closer reading of the latest omega-3 study confirms something that has always appealed to my intuition: that the health benefits are more closely related to ingesting whatever the “magic ingredient” happens to be in its naturally-occurring food form than swallowing some kind of pill extract.
And, from the Harvard study: “In other words, what we include in our diet is as important as what we exclude, so substituting healthier foods for red meat provides a double benefit to our health.”
Or, to turn it around, some of the health benefits of seafood come from the fact that they serve as substitute goods for red meat in our diets. If memory serves, the very first studies that got excited about omega-3s looked at the high-fish diet of some Native Alaskans who were remarkably free of heart disease. And, the very first articles debunking omega-3’s benefits were those that concluded that the improved health came from the fact that every meal that involved a steak from a salmon didn’t use one from a cow.
So, with another Lent in our rear-view mirrors (even for the Eastern Orthodox, who celebrated Easter on April 15 in 2012), can we find some good news on the meat front? Well, our pals at Burger King are now promoting a healthier menu; more on that and related in our next post. Stay tuned…
P.S. File under evidence of a Merciful God…I’m posting on the Friday after Orthodox Easter, which, as compensation for the grueling (in some cases, literally) Great Lent, is a fast-free day. Michelina’s and Hillshire Farm on my menu today!